With the arrival of the new official Raspberry Pi Touchscreen, we were excited to find applications for it in our Max2Play system. Since audio applications have been one of our main focuses from the start, we immediately thought of a combination of sound card and screen. We had already created great bundles for both touchscreen and sound card solutions, but the combination was something we were still working on. The main connectors of the Raspberry Pi can only be used for one device at a time. So we had to become creative and can now show you the result.
With just a few tweaks to the standard Raspberry Pi Touchscreen and Case, we can now combine it with a powerful DAC sound card directly on-board. When we incorporate these components into our Max2Play Image using the elegant Jivelite visualization and our own RPi display plugin, we get a great setup with all the features we know and love, great sound and massive touchscreen to control it all.
Step 1: Connect the Touchscreen and the Sound Card with the Raspberry Pi
Just follow the instructions from your touchscreen and make sure everything is well adjusted using spacers and screws. Then put the sound card on top of the Raspberry using the GPIO connector bar. We are using a HiFiBerry DAC+ light for our system. Its affordable yet powerful nature combined with its small size makes it perfect for this project.
Step 2: Drill Holes into the Case for Your Sound Card's Output
Check the dimensions of your sound card's output and its distance from bottom of the touchscreen. With these specifications you can mark the area on the case that has to be removed in order to be able to connect your sound card
Use a drill to bore a hole where you have marked the exits for the sound card. Then check if the case fits comfortably onto the system. If not, just extend the holes until there is no pressure on the case anymore.
Step 3: Solder the Two Connectors Onto the Sound Card
Since the two peripheries, screen and sound card, both need a lot of juice to run properly, we need to give the sound card an additional power source in the form of the 5 volt connector on the touchscreen. However we cannot connect the two yet since the connectors on the sound card are only for the Raspberry Pi.
That is why we need to solder a little line of four connectors onto the top of our sound card. We just need two connections for the power supply, the first and fourth holes, so we only need to solder in two places. Once those two are rightly connected and sit strong on the sound card, we need to bend the connectors a little in order to not have them stick out in our case.
Now that this new ridge is added and conformed to the rest of the system, we just need to connect the two cables and all the hardware is in place.
Step 4: Burn the Max2Play HiFiBerry Image on a MicroSD Card
All images for download on Max2Play are packed in .rar or .zip files and can be burnt onto a card using a simple tool like the WinDiskImager for Windows. Just let it burn and once the process is done, put the card into the Raspberry Pi. This image lets you configure your Raspberry Pi without connecting a keyboard or mouse to the Raspberry. All settings can be done through our web interface on your laptop, desktop computer or even your smartphone.
In this instructable we use the HiFiBerry Image since we are using a HiFiBerry DAC+ light as our sound card, but the other Raspberry Pi images work as well.
Step 5: Set Up the Plugins Jivelite and RPi Display
Now its time for the software setup. Max2Play has already done the heavy lifting with its plug-and-play image. We just need to make a few adjustments in the web interface, which we can reach on any device connected to the local network as well with the browser. Just type http://max2play/ in the URL bar.
With the HiFiBerry Image, we can first set up our sound card. Just select it from the drop down menu, click save, reboot and the sound card is activated. The two premium plugins we need for this setup are the Jivelite installer and the RPi Display. Please make sure you have the filesystem expanded, the premium license activated and the system updated before you install them.
Jivelite comes preconfigured when the license is active. We just need to select it from the available plugins section and put it in into active mode where it will show up in your main menu. From there we can access its own page where just need to click install and wait a few minutes until we get the message to reboot again.
Now we just need one more plugin to activate the touchscreen; our RPi Display addon. We have to add it to the plugins section by copying the source URL from our plugins list on Max2Play.com. Once we have done that, we just need to select our 7 inch screen and click install. Then we have to reboot and click install again to fit the kernel update. This marks the last step and if we have Jivelite in autostart, we can already start to play music when our system is booted up again.
Step 6: Enjoy Your New, Elegant Touchscreen Panel With Amazing Sound and Simple Controls
Now you can enjoy Max2Play to its fullest potential. With the touchscreen and Jivelite interface, you can always quickly start your favorite radio station, podcast or playlist. The navigation is simple and gives all the features that the Squeezebox technology has to offer.
Thanks to the sound card all the output sounds crisp and you can enjoy your music in the quality it deserves without a big investment. With the RCA connectors, you can connect any analog speaker you like and easily take your music station on the road.